You just found out the location of your next duty station and your first thought is, “we’re PCS’ing where?” You’re moving to the middle of nowhere with nothing to do. The job scene is scarce, entertainment doesn’t exist – what do you do?!
Most likely this will happen to you at some point and there isn’t much we can do to change it, but what we can do is make the most of it. Below are a few tips to help!
1) Take a Mini Tour Drive- You may not be in a desirable location, but look around to what is nearby or within a few hours driving distance and take advantage of those areas and take trips! You might be surprised what is within driving distance. You will have to a do a little research, but you will have some time on your hands so take advantage of it.
2) Local restaurants – You will find some of the best food you have ever tried at local restaurants, just try them out and see for yourself! You will also be supporting a locally owned operation, which is wonderful.
3) Do something to better yourself – Don’t let this time go to waste, especially if you’re not going to be as busy as what you are used to being. It’s the perfect time to go back to school or learn a new skill and there are so several options available online, so get to work on it!
4) Do something you have always wanted to do – Figure out what this might be and just go for it because this will be the time to do it. Maybe you want to get in shape (you don’t need a gym, so no excuses on that part) or make more meals at home. More times than not, you can find instructions for what you need on the internet, so being in the middle of nowhere really won’t matter if you have a decent internet connection.
5) Enjoy what you do have – If you are moving to an area where the pace of life is slower, enjoy it. Go out for a walk and take the dogs and kids with you. Go on a picnic somewhere every now and again. Take a breather for a while. These are things that many of us want to do but never end up actually doing. It doesn’t cost you anything but makes such a big difference in how you will feel.
6) Get Social…Online – Search for Facebook pages to find groups in the area that might be of interest to you as well as spouse pages (I would recommend you search for these before your big move). Learn about the area and check the calendar of events of local happenings. I know this seems like common sense, but a lot of people don’t think to check directly with their post or town to see what local events are going on and miss out on a lot of great happenings.
7) Try out the FRG – This will be a good way to meet other spouses and maybe even make a few friends. You don’t know how it will turn out until you try. If you try it and don’t like, then no harm done.
8) Traditions & Rituals – Once you make a few new friends, start a ritual so that you get together ever week or two and have dinner or watch a movie. My husband and I had dinner every Friday night with a couple of our best friends when we were in the middle of nowhere and would always have pizza, margaritas, watch a movie, and relax in their hot tub (if you find a friend with a hot tub, it’s a plus!). It wasn’t anything extraordinary, but we always looked forward to it.
9) Lose yourself in someone else’s problems -Pick up a book and get your eyes off the computer screen for while. If you can’t find the book that you’re looking for locally, order it online!
10) Volunteer – There is always a need for volunteers regardless of location. Search for a cause that you care about and go out a make a difference! You don’t have to make it a full time thing, but just going out and volunteering a few hours a week will make such a big difference and what a wonderful feeling it is to give back. You can also add volunteer experience to your resume!
I hope that some of these tips might help you if you if ever get sent to a less than desirable post and I speak from experience with these. It really is what you make of it, so make it the best it can possibly be!
Angelique is a proud Army wife and happily married to her husband, Ray. After being PCS’ed from one side of the country to the other, Ft. Bragg, NC, is currently home. She has a degree in Counseling and a career background in Corporate Human Resources. She is an advocate for animal rights and enjoys supporting military and environmental causes. She is an accomplished flute player of 23 years and in her spare time she enjoys crafting, decorating, genealogy, traveling, watching horrible B rated movies, and is obsessed with anything pertaining to Disney. She and Ray are the proud pet parents of two dogs, Maddie and Ringo.
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